Tuesday, April 24, 2012

What's Going on With the Military?

I may have blogged about one of my co-workers a few years ago, when he bragged about how much he loved going down to Texas, as part of his military police duties, and performing "cell extractions" for practice, because the Texas authorities didn't care how brutal they were. He gloried in his power over the inmates. Last week, he came to work and explained that when he woke up that morning, he had 5 phone messages from the military, telling him that he was honorably discharged, with full benefits, unless he got his Congressman to intervene in 24 hours. WTF? He was dumfounded. And so am I. He said that in no way would he quit the military now, not when he'd worked so hard to get where he is, and not when he had a sweet deployment coming up in October. What deployment? I asked, wondering if he was going to the Bahamas, or something. Khandahar, Afghanistan, he said. Why is that a sweet deployment? I asked. Because, he said, I am the head of a 35 man Special Forces unit that gets to kick in doors, everynight. He whined that he had just gone to a 2 week boot camp, and why did they send him there to be tortured if they were going to discharge him? Why indeed? And why was someone who has been in the military for years sent to boot camp? And how did someone in the Military Police end up in the Special Forces? I didn't ask him any of that. But I do know that the military picks the most brutal of their members to be in the most repressive of their units. So, I'm guessing that that is how he ended up in Special Forces. But why the sudden drumming out? Is it possible that the US is really taking the protests of the Afghan government seriously? And are they weeding out those that they know will live out their brutal fantasies of wielding power and dealing out fear, torture and death to those unable to fight back? Are they actually trying to stop US soldiers from raping, murdering and urinating on Afghan civilians? When I told this story to friends on Saturday, one of them said that the same thing happened to a friend of her children. Although he was diagnosed with PTSD, he was to be re-deployed to Afghanistan, until they suddenly informed him of his immediate honorable discharge from the military. Interesting.
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